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Irish Times on Japan considering moving elderly families from Tokyo to relieve the congestion overpopulation in the city has created:

Over the next decade, the population of over-75s in greater Tokyo will grow by 1.75 million, warns the council. Looking after 5.7 million very elderly people will overwhelm already stretched services; for one thing, it predicts, more than 130,000 could be left without beds in care homes.

Diffusing Japan’s demographic time-bomb has become something of a political obsession.

By 2060, Japan’s population is projected to fall from 127 million to about 87 million, of which almost 40 per cent will be 65 or older. Last year the government pledged to somehow stem the fall at 100 million.

That is some way to thank older Tokyo residents who dedicated their life to the city – shove them in the backwoods to die alone. What is wrong with people?

Business Insider on the life-changing experience it is to live in Japan and seventeen important lessons learned while living abroad:

When you first set foot in Japan, it’s hard not to be impressed by the efficiency and social order.

The streets are clean, trains run on time, and the people are quiet and polite, yet possess enough of the bizarre to be intriguing (cosplay, line-ups for chicken ramen-flavored ice cream or Lotteria 5-pattied tower burger anyone?).

Living in Japan, or even just visiting, can be a life-changing experience.

No one returns to their country the same person as when they left.

Here are some of the things that make such an impression on foreigners, they cause us to think a second time, and alter the way we think, act, or view the world.

In short, they prompt us to make life changes.

Just when you thought you knew it all…

Almost all of these resonate with my own experiences living in Japan.

France 24 on real-life 40-year-old virgins in Japan and the heartache they experience because of their lack of any real relationship knowledge or education:

Matchmaking expert Yoko Itamoto says the economic emasculation has taken its toll on Japan’s men, as more of them struggle to find secure, full-time jobs.

“Many men seem to have lost confidence as they’ve lost their economic muscle,” she said.

“In the past two decades, the situation for Japanese men has been very tough and competitive.”

The pain caused by an inability to form emotional and physical relationships with women is something that one 49-year-old architect, who did not wish to be named, knows too well.

Only twice in his life has he had romantic and sexual feelings for a woman — the first time in his mid-twenties and then again two decades later.

Both rebuffed him.

“It was devastating,” he told AFP. “It seemed to invalidate my life and take away my reason to live.”

On both occasions he suffered rapid weight-loss, and now fears he might live life as a singleton and a virgin.

Japan is not the hyper-sexual country the rest of the world believes it to be, thanks to its very peculiar yet highly popular cultural exports.